Why other companies are investing in Corporate Wellness Programs?
The health of employees is rapidly becoming a key business factor. Sick leave is becoming a huge problem. Absenteeism from work can be damaging to the Irish economy as well as impacting on an employee’s welfare and wellbeing. It is one of the most persistent problems affecting productivity, profitability and competitiveness for Irish organisations and companies.
Absenteeism still has a significant impact in terms of direct costs for big business and small firms. For large businesses the average absenteeism rate is 2.34% or 5.4 days where as in businesses with less than 50 employees the rate is 2.06% or 4.7 days. IBEC has estimated that the cost of absenteeism in Ireland is about €1.5 billion per year.
Making the link between employee health and productivity is a necessary step to assess the full impact of poor health, but the next step is even more important: to improve the health and employees, provide good working conditions and with that increase morale, motivation and performance. This is only sustainable with an integrated health management approach.
For employees, the maintenance of individual health is often seen as a difficult challenge amidst competing demands of the work day, family responsibility, and other social obligations. However, adopting healthy behaviors not only reduces risk for developing disabling or life threatening diseases and their associated costs, but improves everyday quality of life.
Comprehensive programs that address individual health behaviors as well as health and safety risks from the work environment also reduce disease and injury risk. Participation in health promotion activities through a workplace health program allows individuals to develop knowledge, self-management and coping skills as well as build a social support network among coworkers, supervisors, and family.
Employees often see a comprehensive workplace health program as an investment made by their company for their well-being and a reflection of how much the company cares about its employees which may impact job satisfaction and morale.